Wednesday, June 8, 2011
The Mighty Mo
There is only one river with a personality,
a sense of humor, and a woman's caprice;
a river that goes traveling sidewise,
that interferes in politics,
rearranges geography, and dabbles in real estate;
a river that plays hide and seek with you today
and tomorrow follows you around like a pet
dog with a dynamite cracker tied to his tail.
That river is the Missouri.
-George Fitch, circa 1840
Sunday afternoon below Big Bend Dam...
it looked pretty normal -
The boats charge up to the dam
cast their lines in the water
and as they ride the fast water
backward they're reeling in as
many walleye as they can!
See the big red sign?
KEEP BACK 400 Feet!
Even 400 feet looks too close for me!
Especially, this weekend
as 130,000 cubic feet of water per second
are raging through the Oahe Dam
just north of Big Bend!
Notice the stairs and fence and how
high the water is!!
For the first time in the dam's history
the U.S. Corps of Engineers
opened the spillway here at Big Bend.
This decision was prompted
by flooding concerns due to
heavy rains in the northern plains
and heavy snow pack in the Rocky Mountains.
Many low lying communities
have been sand-bagging, building levees
and evacuating their homes
Today the spillways and dam were
opened to the maximum
150,000 cubic feet per second.
All of us here in the
Missouri River basin
are holding our breath!
Look out below, the water is a comin'!